LaDainian Tomlinson Is Ready to Prove His Doubters Wrong

Sean E. Douglas@@seanfantasyinfoSenior Writer IIIJune 29, 2009

SAN DIEGO - JANUARY 03:  LaDainian Tomlinson #21 of the San Diego Chargers celebrates a score against the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC Wild Card Game on January 3, 2009 at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

This past week LaDainian Tomlinson turned the ripe old age of 30. Many fantasy football analysts will give you the common info that because LT has hit this landmark age he is practically "washed up."

Just recently I wrote a column and did a Fantasy-Info/2009/06/28/Should-Steven-Jackson-be-a-Top-Five-Fantasy-Pick">show on blog talk radio on how a magazine that both my father and I like, had Steven Jackson ranked No. 5 and LT ranked No. 7. In that work, I questioned just how important a player's age is, versus their performance on the field.

Tomlinson has not missed a regular season start since 2004 (he missed one game) and has been a solid, if not a fantastic fantasy option in every year of his career.

Sure he did wear down a bit in his rookie year but that was his first season in the NFL. It usually takes a guy a year to get used to the full 16-week schedule.

Now it is true that LT has broken down once he has gotten to the playoffs, but that does not really matter in fantasy football. Fantasy owners care more if the guy was health enough to start on a regular basis.

Yet now that Tomlinson has turned the magic 30, it looks as if fantasy experts are throwing his ability to play down the drain and warning everyone that LT is a risk.

The Guy Still Puts Up Numbers

While LT did not have a great season by his standards last year, he did post over 1,500 all purpose yards and 12 touchdowns. He also had another season with over 50 receptions (52) and again played all 16 games.

It's true that LT is now heading into his ninth year in the league, but when you look at the team he's on, one has to believe he should do well again.

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Who Is Going To Take Carries Away From LT?

The Chargers drafted no one significant this spring to fill LT's shoes. This means that Darren Sproles is still going to be the back-up runner in San Diego. While Sproles is a talented player, he is only a change of pace runner and special teams man.

By no stretch of the imagination should Sproles or any other runner get work over LT when the Chargers pound out goal-line touchdown opportunities.

Fantasy Information for LaDainian Tomlinson

Right now I still see LaDainian as a top-three runner in fantasy football. While he is behind Adrian Peterson and Michael Turner, I just don't believe LT should go any lower then that.

The AFC west is clearly the weakest division in fantasy football against the run. Look for the Chargers to roll to a division title and for LT to have another solid year.

While I don't believe Tomlinson is the same player he was four or five years ago, I do believe this guy is still a very solid producer. Their is no reason why LT should not have another season that gives you a chance to win a fantasy title in 2009.

Written By- Sean E. Douglas: fantasy-info.com


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